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How to Find a Life Coach


There's help here to assist you to find a like coach and make the job of finding a life coach easier.

Hopefully you've read about the different types of coaching, perhaps understood something about the different coaching methods and coaching processes being used. If you are ready to go ahead with coaching, now you are ready to get going and you want to find a life coach in your area.

Finding the right life coach for you might seem like a difficult task. Where do you start to look? How do you know is someone is a good coach or not so good? How do you tell if they will be right for you? You will be investing significant time and money with this person, how do you get the best from your investment? time These questions become more important when you want someone to help you with things that could have a big impact on your future.

Something very important that it's worth getting out there now is that the outcome of your coaching is up to you. Like almost everything else, you will get out of coaching what you put into it. A coach is not a fixer, or a crutch, or a miracle worker. A good coach can help you to achieve what may seem like miracles, but you do the work!

You may have seen adverts in the local press. Coaches seem to particularly like to advertise in 'county' magazines. (Could that be because those magazines tend to be read by well heeled types with loads of time on their hands?). You often see coaches business cards in strategic places like health club receptions. Some coaches make somewhat unrealistic claims for their abilities. Watch out for long lists of 'specialities' (stop smoking, remove phobias, make more money, be healthier, better relationships, etc., etc., etc. Can someone really be good at everything? Some coaches have long lists of impressive looking letters after their names. Anyone can add letters after their name (Robert Neely, DipC,MP NLP, Memb GNLP, BPS: try it for yourself, it's easy), but what do those letters mean? If they reflect training, what was the quality and duration of the training?)

If you contact a coach 'cold', what should you ask them? That's covered here but before you contact the coach you should make sure you know what you want, and what you are looking for from your coach.

To find a life coach, you have a number of choices: Here are some ways you could start to find the right coach for you.

Recommendations. It's reassuring to get a recommendation from someone you know. It's a good start. At least you will have some context to their referral to help you understand what they tell you about the coach. You can get an insight into a coach and how they work from someone whose opinion you trust.

Ask for Referrals from other areas of coaching: At work. If you are in a company that uses coaching at work, ask the coaches if they can recommend a life coach to you. They may of course offer to help you themselves. In any event have a look at the page here about choosing a life coach to help you pick the right coach for you.

Life Coaching Directories - These tend to be listing sites. Coaches pay to list their details and the sites promote themselves so that you can find them and their listed coaches. Here's a list of directories.

Business Networking Groups. You will invariably find a few coaches attached to business networking groups, both on-line groups and groups that meet on a regular basis. These can be a good place to meet a coach and 'check them out' fairly painlessly. You can chat to them and ask some questions without feeling too much like you are being sold to, and at least determine if you feel comfortable with them. Bear in mind that they are there looking for clients and will, even if very gently, be trying to make a good impression and reel you in.

There may be people at the groups who are being coached and you can ask them for referrals. If you find someone who is being (or has recently been) coached then you can ask them about their experiences. How did they find the right person? How did they choose someone?

Here are a couple of networking groups:

ecademy. (www.ecademy.co.uk) An online and meeting group, with many sub-groups (such as groups for Coaches that you can enquire to, for example), and many local groups that meet regularly.

BNI. (http://www.bni.co.uk) A 'breakfast club' group that meet regularly (weekly in most cases) at the same time in the same place. There will almost definitely be a BNI near you, and you can usually go to a couple of meetings without joining on a long term commitment basis. Groups have a 'leader' who you can contact to

Professional Coaching Organisations: Whilst there is no 'official' or government acknowledged coaching bodies (equivalents of the BACP - British Association of Counseling and Psychotherapy, UKCP, BPS or the like), a number of organisations and groups have got together to form associations and organisations that are 'professionalising' coaching. Some of these offer accreditation, publish ethical standards and codes of practice, and monitor the qualification of coaches. Some also provide a directory service where coaches can be listed, sometimes with details of their experience or expertise.